NASCAR is coming to Chicago on July 1st and 2nd in 2023.
The city has agreed to let NASCAR hold a race through the streets of Chicago with a 3-year partnership deal for their annual NASCAR Cup Series.
Now, it’s been announced that the 2.2 mile course will involve Lakeshore Drive, Michigan Avenue and Columbus Drive, according to officials. The race will be the first of its kind in Chicago and falls in line with something Ben Kennedy, NASCAR’s senior vice president of racing development and strategies, said about his initiative to transform the ‘Cup Series’ schedule by adding new, splashy events in major markets. The goal here is to create more races that generate increased fan interest along with removing the same tracks hosting multiple races.
They first tested the idea with an online iRacing event on a 12-turn virtual circuit. The template used on the virtual event started on South Columbus Drive near Buckingham Fountain. This event created the template officials used to plan the actual physical track.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot mentioned she has not yet received a cost benefit analysis of the race, but there are hopes it will be a big payoff. With tickets expected to go on sale next year, it’s bound to be a major milestone event for the Windy City.
For more information, check out the official site here.
[Featured photo via: @soldierfield / Instagram]